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Unemployment rates in Louisiana among lowest in country

22nd January 2013   ·   0 Comments

By Travis M. Andrews
Contributing Writer

Though Governor Bobby Jindal has to find $127 million to cut from the state budget mid-year, the state has recently seen a bit of good news. It has one of the lowest unemployment rates in the country.

In a national trend, unemployment rates fell below seven percent in most U.S. cities this past November. In a survey of the 372 largest metropolitan areas, unemployment fell below seven percent in 192, though it rose in 124 cities.

Among those with the lowest unemployment rate was New Orleans at a 4.7 percent unemployment rate. This is a far cry from the rate one year prior, which stood at 8.5 percent (a celebrated number, as 200,000 jobs were added to the city).

Baton Rouge also saw a massive drop in unemployment. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the capitol city saw a 4.2 percent drop in unemployment since June, the percentage currently resting at 4.5 percent. That’s the same number as Oklahoma City, a metro area touted for having a low unemployment rate.

The lowest on the list is Bismarck, ND, which boasts a 2.6 percent rate (thank oil and and gas drilling.) The city just beats out Fargo, NND, which sits at three percent.

Readers are cautioned about these numbers, as they are likely to drop in the coming months. Unemployment rates generally drop during the holiday season, as retailers, shipping companies and other industries that find greater demand during the holidays tend to drop seasonal workers.

Still, these should rise proportionally, signaling good news for Louisiana. Even with these uncharacteristically low rates, Yuma, Ariz. and El Centro Calif. had 27.5 and 26.6 percent unemployment rates.

This article was originally published in the January 21, 2013 print edition of The Louisiana Weekly newspaper

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